Christian Scriptures is one of my favorite courses to teach yet, it can be challenging to get students to see the relevance of scripture in their lives. I begin this course by asking students to reflect on their own lives, their own stories. I remind them that they have a unique story to tell and then we move to make the connection between their stories and the stories of our faith. As we read and study the Gospels, I challenge them think about how this might be relevant in their lives. In the Gospels, we read that Jesus used parables to teach about the Kingdom of God. He made sure that these parables were drawn from everyday life, were thought provoking and challenged the contemporary perception of the Kingdom of God. This year, I challenged my budding theologians to use their creativity and write a modern day parable based on one we read, analyzed and reflected in class.
“Imagine you are running in a Marathon. At the end of the race [there] is a prize. You will run and run until you reach there. On the way, you might trip and fall. A person will be there to help you and he will help you when you trip and fall and is determined to get you to the finish line. He is determined until you finish your run. After the marathon, you will be celebrating with the person who helped you, so you shall earn the prize. If you don’t you will give up the marathon and wont, get the prize.”
“Think of heaven like a gaming clan. It starts with a leader. Then, it begins to grow over time. Getting more members and the clan starts to go global. It is like heaven and Jesus/God as our leader and us as the members joining the clan.”
My hope is that by not only engaging the Gospels but also engaging their own lives, my students can grow in their faith and come to understand that their own story is part of this larger story of Christianity. How would your modern parable read?